BOSTON -- Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria has one word for fans concerned about his team’s June swoon: “Relax.”
“We’re going to be fine,” Loria said Tuesday at Fenway Park before the slumping Marlins opened a three-game series against the Red Sox. “This is an excellent team, and I would never bet against them. We’re two games out of the wild card, and we could not have been playing worse for a very short moment.”
The Marlins arrived in Boston having lost 10 of their past 12 games.
Offensively, the Marlins have been dreadful. They were one-hit on Friday at Tropicana Field and two-hit on Sunday. As a team, they have struck out at least 10 times in each of the five previous games heading into Tuesday.
“I don’t have any concern,” Loria said. “Obviously, I’d like to see more. But I’m not worried long-term about our offense at all.”
Loria said the Marlins have plenty of schedule left to get back on track.
“I see nothing but Miami sunshine,” Loria said. “It’s going to be one helluva run.”
Loria said the absence of injured outfielder Emilio Bonifacio has hurt.
“You can’t say it’s because Bonifacio’s not in the lineup,” Loria said. “You can’t say it’s only because of him. But, the truth is, it was a different dynamic when he was in there, and he’ll be back shortly.”
The Marlins continue to lead the majors in stolen bases, but the margin is shrinking. Heading into play on Tuesday, they had stolen only one base over their past 12 games.
“That’s hurt us, for sure,” said shortstop Jose Reyes. “When we were successful and winning a lot of ball games, we did the little stuff really good, like going to first and third and stealing a base when we needed it. But, right now, we are not hitting too good and not getting on base. We miss that. That’s a big weapon for us.”
• Giancarlo Stanton has completely changed his batting practice regimen so that he shoots pretty much everything to right. But when he showed up to Fenway Park on Tuesday, he couldn’t resist the urge and took aim on the fabled Green Monster in early batting practice.
“I let a few loose,” Stanton said, smiling. “There were a few. You’re not fully warmed up in early BP, but I still got a few out. It’s cool. You don’t need to necessarily get under the ball. It’s high, but you don’t have to change anything to get it up over that thing.”
Stanton was named the NL Player of the Month for May. But he has struggled this month, going 8 for his past 46 with one home run over the past 12 games entering Tuesday.
• Wednesday: Marlins RHP Ricky Nolasco (6-5, 4.37 ERA) at Boston Red Sox LHP Felix Doubront (7-3, 4.17), 7:10 p.m., Fenway Park.
• Thursday: Marlins RHP Carlos Zambrano (4-5, 3.92) at Red Sox RHP Daisuke Matsuzaka (0-2, 5.73), 7:10 p.m., Fenway Park.
• Scouting report: When Nolasco pitched at Fenway Park in 2009, he earned the win by holding the Red Sox to one hit in a game that was shortened to five innings because of rain. Nolasco faced the Red Sox in Miami on June 13, allowing three earned runs in a game the Marlins eventually lost 10-2.